South Andaman & Port Blair | Andaman and Nicobar Islands

Port Blair is the capital of the Union Territory of Andaman & Nicobar Islands and it is also the gateway to the beautiful chain of islands. It is located on the east coast of the South Andaman Island. Port Blair is the only city in the Territory, rest of the Islands in the Andaman and Nicobar have a rural setup.
Few places in Andaman Islands like Rangat and Diglipur have gradually developed into small towns over a period.

Port Blair is an Island town thats offers water sports activities like snorkeling, scuba diving, sea-cruises in addtion to the glimpses of the penal history and culture of the region. The Aberdeen Bazaar forms the centre of the town. Majority of the restaurants and hotels are around this area. The main bus station is just west of the bazaar and the Airport 4 Kms. to the south west. The main passenger dock for inter island ferries Phoenix Bay Jetty is 1 Km. to the North West.

Port Blair region has nearly 45% of A and N population. Port Blair has a large proportion of the population engaged in services including Public Administration.



Latitude : 11.66845856334245 | Longitude : 92.737149206543

Activities : Snorkeling, Boat Ride, Scuba Diving, Sea Walk, Jet Ski, Trekking

What to wear : Cotton outfits, Hats, sunglasses, sunscreen lotion

Mode of Transportation : Bus. Boat, Cars

Departure / Return Location Flight, Ship

History

South Andaman was inhabited by the native Great Andamanese before the British established their colony . The Capital city Port Blair is named after the British Captain Archibald Blair. Cap. Blair and Col. Colebrook of the East India Company surveyed the Andaman and Nicobar Islands in 1788.

Encouraged by the survey, a small settlement on the Chatham Island was established in 1789. The Port Blair was then called Port Cornwallis (after Charles Cornwallis the then Governor General of India from 1786-1793 and 1805). The colony was abandoned  in 1796 due to ill health of the residents. 

On 10th March 1858 James Pattison Walker arrived with 200 convicts  to recolonise the Island. Walker initially set up Headquarters of the new settlement at Chatham Island but due to water scarcity moved the Headquarter to Ross Island. Convicts were kept in thatched roofed barracks that kept leaking during the rains. Later a Jail at Viper Island was contrcuted during 1864-67.

The native Great Andamanese were not happy about the British activity in their Island and they planned a massive attack on 17-May-1859 at Aberdeen. The natives were killed in great numbers during the battle (Battle of Aberdeen). 

On 26th June 1941 at IST 4.21 PM, an earthquake of great magnitude hit the South Andaman and damaged a number of buildings on the Ross Island and nearby Aberdeen village at Port Blair. The Japanese forces occupied Andaman and Nicobar Islands on 23 March 1942. The civilians and shop owners were forced to leave the Ross Island. Japanese forces converted Ross island into a Military Base. Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose visited Andaman islands on 29 December 1943. He stayed at Ross Island in the former Govt. House of the then Chief Commissioner.The allied forces reoccupied the Islands on 7th October 1945.



South Andaman Tourist Map

Landmarks

Click to point on the map

Attractions at South Andaman:



North Bay : South Andaman

1. North Bay

North Bay is the most accessible place near Port Blair city for water sports activities. The activities offered are Scuba diving, Under Sea-Walking, Snorkelling, Swimming and Glass bottom boat ride. Though North Bay is connected to the South Andaman Island, the easy accessibility is through ferry from Marina Park (Rajiv Gandhi water sports complex) and Junglighat. The ferry takes around 20 minutes from the city. There are few souvenir shops and eateries at the Bay.  Visitors can also trek to the Hillock and climb to the North Point lighthouse at the Island.

 

Ross Island : South Andaman

2. Ross Island

Ross Island was the erstwhile capital of A&N Islands. The island houses the ruins of old buildings like the Ballroom, Chief Commissioner’s House, Govt. House, Church, Cemetery, Hospital, Bakery, Press, swimming Pool and Troop Barracks, all memoirs of the British Regime. The island is a 10 minute boat journey from Phoenix Bay Jetty.

 

Chidiya Tapu : South Andaman

3. Chidiya Tapu

Chidiya Tapu : 25 kms from Port Blair, is the southern most tip of South Andaman. The lush green forest cover with birds, pristine beaches and mangroves make it an ideal picnic spot. It offers a wonderful sun set view.

 

Jolly Buoy Island : South Andaman

4. Jolly Buoy Island

JollyBuoy Island is one of the beautiful coral Islands of the Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park. The Island is known for its clear blue & green shades of water, its marine life and the various activities offered. JollyBuoy island is uninhabited and day time entry and exit is ensured by the forest authorities.

 

Cellular Jail : South Andaman

5. Cellular Jail

Cellular Jail a National Memorial, is a place of historic significance. The Jail, originally a seven pronged building with a central tower, is a massive structure comprising honeycomb like corridors. Presently, three of the seven wings remain. The Jail also houses a museum, an art gallery and a photo gallery. Memories of the heroic freedom struggle and the experience of being imprisoned in the Cellular Jail are narrated in the Sound and Light Show (Son-Et-Lumiere) every evening at 5.45 (Hindi show) and 6.45 (English show) in the Jail premises.

 

Chatham Saw Mill : South Andaman

6. Chatham Saw Mill

Chatham Island houses one of the oldest and largest saw mills in Asia. The island is connected to Haddo, Port Blair by a bridge and has the second largest wharf of the islands. The sawmill is the storehouse of a variety of wood species. The saw mill was established in 1883 by the british to meet all the local timber requirements.  The museum in the mill compound showcases  various models and forest department activities in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Various timber mememtioes and decorative pieces made of famous Padauk wood and Gurjan etc. is avialable for sale. The saw mill is open to tourists from 9.am to 2.00 pm on all weekdays.

 

Viper Island : South Andaman

7. Viper Island

Long before the iconic cellular Jail was constructed Viper Island housed the notorious Jail "Viper Chain Gang Jail"  constructed between 1864-67 (supervision of Col. Ford). The Jail was home to the convicts considered most dangerous. The convicts were kept in fetters and were forced to work with those fetters on. The ruins of this two storeyed building jail and gallows are still seen on the Viper island. The island is situated within a 20 minute boat journey from Phoenix Bay or Junglighat Jetty at Port Blair. The Island derived its name after a cutter vessel Viper which met with an accident and sank near this Island. 

 

Wandoor Beach : South Andaman

8. Wandoor Beach

Wandoor is a village in South Andaman and is the entry point of the Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park, spread over 281.5 sq. kms covering the sea and 15 islands and adjoining coral reefs. The Marine park is a
natural ‘haven of open sea’ creeks and islands. The area is rich in coral and marine life. Red Skin and Jolly Buoy Islands are popular for scuba diving and snorkelling. Glass bottom boats are available.

 

Anthropological Museum : South Andaman

9. Anthropological Museum

Anthropological Museum has models and habitat of the aborigines, the tools and the implements they use, the
Anthropological Museum depicts the life of Paleolithic lslanders.

 

Red Skin Island : South Andaman

10. Red Skin Island

Red Skin Island is part of the Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park. Red Skin and JollyBouy Island are alternatively opened for tourists and hence it is not possible to visit this place without the schedule as decided by the Local Administration

 

Gandhi Park : South Andaman

11. Gandhi Park

Gandhi Park is located next to the Raj Nivas (Lt. Governers House) at Port Blair. The Gandhi Park was earlier known as Dilthaman Tank was the only source from where drinking water was supplied to the City of Port Blair. It was in 1993 when it was developed as a beautiful park.

 

Kalapani Museum : South Andaman

12. Kalapani Museum

Kalapani Museum

 

Science Centre : South Andaman

13. Science Centre

Science Centre

 

Sippighat Farm : South Andaman

14. Sippighat Farm

 Sippighat Farm is a research centre for cultivation of spices (cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, coconut and pepper). Situated about 14 km. away from the city of Port Blair the Government Agricultural Farm is spread
over an area of 80 acres. It is a research centre where experiments on different crops, including horticulture, spices like clove, nutmeg, dalchini and pepper etc. are undertaken for their extensive propagation in these Islands.

 

Carbyns Cove Beach : South Andaman

15. Carbyns Cove Beach

Carbyns Cove, is located 7 kms away from Port Blair town. With hotels, restaurants, changing rooms facilities, it makes an ideal spot for sun-bathing. Snake Island located nearby is known for scuba diving.

 

KurmaDera Beach : South Andaman

16. KurmaDera Beach

KurmaDera Beach

 

Mount Harriet : South Andaman

17. Mount Harriet

Mount Harriet is the second highest peak in South Andaman offering a magnificent view. It is situated 55 km by road / 15 km by ferry. Trekking is available from Bambooflat to Mount Harriet. From Mount Harriet, a trail can be taken to reach Madhuban. Mount Harriet houses a variety of rare endemic birds, animals and butterflies. Mount Harriet was the summer headquarters of the Commisioner during British Era. The location is named after one Harriet Tytler. it is an ideal place for trekking, picnic and bird watching. A guest house maintained by the Forest Department is available for stay.

 

Rutland Island : South Andaman

18. Rutland Island

Rutland Island
 

Population :
Bengali Settlers : During 1949-1952, 450 refugee families from east Pakistan (Bangladesh) were settled in South Andaman on 3000 acres of land.

Power supply to the region is from a variety of DG plants located in and around Port Blair.

Water supply is from rainwater storage and hence is dependant on monsoons. Supply is through the Dhanikhari Dam and other small nallahs. With increased concentration of population and tourists in Port Blair there is high pressure on water supply. The area faces water shortage especially during March – April when there is rationing of water.

Banking facility is available through State Bank of India, Andaman Co-Op Bank and variety of other banks with money changing facility. ATMs of select banks are also present in Port Blair.


List of Museum / Emporium at Port Blair

  • Anthropological Museum, Near Directorate of IP & T
  • Cottage Industries Emporium, Middle Point
  • Khadi Gramodyog Emporium, Middle Point
  • Fisheries Museum, Atlanta Point
  • Forest Museum, Haddo
  • Naval Marine Museum (Samudrika),Delanipur
  • Smrithika Museum, Ross Island
  • Art Gallery (Cellular Jail), Atlanta Point
  • Art Gallery at Gandhi Park

Port Blair has a variety of museums including the Anthropological Museum (Located in Middle point, built in 1975 - it shares information about the indigenous and primitive tribes of Andaman and Nicobar Islands), Samudrika (Naval Marine Museum - has samples of 350 species of sea life and rare varieties of corals found in Andaman and Nicobar Islands), Zoological Survey of India Museum, Forestry and Aquarium. They serve the interest of tourists who are keen to educate themselves on the natural wealth of the regions. The mini zoo houses endemic species of birds and animals found in the island.

Marina Park and Gandhi Park are entertainment areas in Port Blair. Both parks have amusement rides, safe water sports and nature trails.

Front view - Cellular Jail   
Andaman Water Sports Complex, has provisions for safe water sports and adventure sports such as water skiing, water scooters, para sailing, sail boats, wind surfers, glass bottom boats etc. But the facilities are found wanting.

Cinque Island, has a beautiful sandbar separating its North and South islands. The island is rich in coral and marine life. Located 39 kms by sea from Port Blair, it is an excellent excursion point. The islands are only serviced by private boat (which were also not available during our field visits).

Villages and Habitations  in South Andaman :
Panchayat Village /Habitation Type
Bindraban Bindraban Revenue Village
Bindraban Kadakachang Revenue Village
Bindraban Mathura Revenue Village
Chouldari Badmash Pahar Revenue Village
Chouldari Chouldari Revenue Village
Chouldari Craikabad Revenue Village
Chouldari Port Mout Revenue Village
Ferrargunj Alipur Revenue Village
Ferrargunj Aniket Revenue Village
Ferrargunj Balughat Revenue Village
Ferrargunj Beach Dera Revenue Village
Ferrargunj Caddlegunj Revenue Village
Ferrargunj Coffee Plot (JPPC)  
Ferrargunj Ferrargunj Revenue Village
Ferrargunj Flat Bay  
Ferrargunj Jhing Nallaha (JPPC APWDC)  
Ferrargunj Jirkatang Camp No 7 (FC)  
Ferrargunj Jirkatang No 2 Revenue Village
Ferrargunj Kalatang Revenue Village
Ferrargunj Madhuban Revenue Village
Ferrargunj Middle Strait (JPPC)  
Ferrargunj Mile Tilek (ARF)  
Ferrargunj Mile Tilek (RV) and Mile Tilek (EFA)  
Ferrargunj Mohwa Dera Revenue Village
Ferrargunj Mount Harriet Revenue Village
Ferrargunj Mrichi Dera Encroached Forest Area
Ferrargunj Pongi Balu (FC) Bada Balu (EFA)  
Ferrargunj Potatang (FC)  
Ferrargunj Temple Myo Revenue Village
Ferrargunj Viper Island Revenue Village
Guptapara Dhanikhari Revenue Village
Guptapara Guptapara Revenue Village
Guptapara Manglutan Encroached Forest Area
Guptapara Manjeri Manjeri (RV) Line Dera (FC)
Guptapara Nayashahar Revenue Village + Encroached Forest Area
Humphrygunj Hashmatabad Encroached Forest Area
Humphrygunj Hashmatabad Revenue Village
Humphrygunj Homfreygunj Revenue Village
Humphrygunj Maymyo Revenue Village + Encroached Forest Area
Humphrygunj Wandoor Revenue Village
Mannarghat Malapuram Revenue Village
Namunaghar Dundas Point Revenue Village
Namunaghar Namunaghar Revenue Village
Shoal Bay Shoal Bay Revenue Village
Shoal Bay Shoal Bay 19 (FC)  
Shore Point Shore Point Revenue Village
Stewartgunj Govindapuram Revenue Village
Stewartgunj Stewartgunj) Revenue Village
Tushnabad Colinpur Revenue Village
Tushnabad Herbertabad Revenue Village
Tushnabad Hobdipur Revenue Village
Tushnabad Manpur Revenue Village
Tushnabad Tirur (JA)  
Tushnabad Tirur Revenue Village
Tushnabad Tirur I (JPPC)  
Tushnabad Tushnabad Revenue Village
Wimberlygunj Kanyapuram Revenue Village
Wimberlygunj Wimberlygunj Revenue Village
Beodnabad Bada Khari (FC)  
Beodnabad Bada Nallaha Bada Balu (EFA)  
Beodnabad Bamboo Nallaha(EFA) incl Kichad Nallaha(EFA)  
Beodnabad Beodnabad (RV)  
Beodnabad Chidiyatapu (RV)  
Beodnabad Chidiyatapu (WLS)  
Beodnabad North Sentinel Island (SA)  
Beodnabad Rutland (RV)  
Brichgunj Brichgunj (RV)  
Brichgunj Brookshabad (RV)  
Brichgunj Calicut (RV)  
Brichgunj Netaji Nagar (RV)  
Brichgunj Rangachang  
Dollygunj Dollygunj (RV)  
Dollygunj Minnie Bay part (RV)  
Dollygunj Pahargaon part (RV)  
Dollygunj School Line part (RV)  
Govindnagar beadnabad  
Govindnagar Govinda Nagar (RV)  
Sippighat Bimilitan (RV)  
Sippighat Sippighat (RV)  
Sippighat Teylorabad(RV)  
Prothrapur Prothrapur (RV)